Further gains for MIA shares

Following last week’s 1.3% gains on the back of an 11% increase in net profits to €11.9 million and a 14.3% rise in the final gross dividend to €0.0615 per share, the share price of Malta International Airport plc edged a further 1.1% higher during this morning’s session to regain the €1.719 level across five trades totalling 9,700 shares. MIA’s equity will turn ex-dividend as from 4 April.

Meanwhile, the recent announcements by FIMBank plc with respect to its 2011 full-year results and the possible takeover by Burgan Bank (a Kuwaiti based bank) continued to generate substantial interest in the equity of the trade finance specialist. In fact, a total of 1.69 million shares traded since the publication of these announcements on 13 March. During this morning’s session 250,000 shares changed hands at the US$0.85 level representing a 2.3% decline from last Friday’s close.

The share price of Bank of Valletta plc also ended this morning’s session in negative territory with a minimal decline to €2.219 but on low volumes of 2,450 shares. Similarly shallow trading activity was registered in MaltaPost plc with the equity recovering some of its recent declines with a 2.2% rise to the €0.93 level on volumes of just over 6,000 shares.

The other three active equities ended today’s session unchanged. A single trade of 2,000 HSBC Bank Malta plc shares was transacted at the €2.502 level with 25,500 shares of RS2 Software plc changing hands at the €0.55 level. Likewise, Medserv plc held on to the €3.95 level as the equity was active for the first time since last week’s publication of the 2011 full-year results. Medserv reported a significant improvement in profitability as the decline in revenues was offset by various cost cutting measures. Medserv recommended a final net dividend of €0.03 per share to all shareholders as at close of trading on 10 April.

On the bond market, the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index was practically unchanged at 982.437 points as Eurozone yields this morning remained around the 1.88% level. Meanwhile this afternoon, benchmark yields shot up to the 1.93 level on speculation that Germany might be more inclined to favour a temporary strengthening of the currency’s defence mechanisms through the integration of its two bailout funds, namely the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) and European Financial Stability Mechanism (EFSM), for a limited period.